This award recognizes solo artists, groups or duos. Instrumental or vocal traditional folk music is eligible.
WINNER La Part du Quêteux – Paye la Traite (QC)
Erynn Marshall & Chris Coole – Meet Me in the Music (BC)
Foggy Hogtown Boys – Pigtown Fling (ON)
John Reischman & The Jaybirds – Stellar Jays (BC)
Les Charbonniers de l’Enfer – À la grâce de Dieu (QC)
This award recognizes solo artists, groups or duos. Instrumental or vocal contemporary folk music is eligible.
WINNER The Duhks – Migrations (MB)
Jim Bryson – Where the Bungalows Roam (ON)
Oh Susanna – Short Stories (ON/BC)
David Francey – Right of Passage (McDonald’s Corners ON)
Jenny Whiteley – Dear (McDonald’s Corners ON)
Best Childrens’ Album
This award recognizes solo artists, groups or duos with a repertoire that is obviously directed towards youth.
WINNER Pied Pumkin – Pumkids : Tuneful Tales for Kids & Kin (BC)
Debbie Carroll – Simply Beautiful (ON)
Geneviève Bilodeau & Connie Kaldor – Un Canard à New York (QC)
Laura Vinson & Free Spirit – Mossbag Lullaby (AB)
Alex Mahé – Wakin’ Up the Sunshine (AB)
This award recognizes a contemporary solo vocalist, or a specified vocalist within a group.
WINNER David Francey – Right of Passage (ON)
Jill Barber – For All Time (NS)
Jeremy Fisher – Goodbye Blue Monday (BC)
Dawn Tyler Watson – En Duo (QC)
T. Nile – At My Table (BC)
Bruce Cockburn – Life Short Call Now (ON)
This award recognizes a solo artist. The majority of the recording must be instrumental. Instrumental music from all folk genres, traditional and contemporary, is eligible.
WINNER Anne Lindsay – News From Up the Street (ON)
Trish Clair-Peck – Dawson’s Tumble (BC)
Brian Thomas – Prairie Rain (Surrey BC)
Les Finnigan – Things My Guitar Said (BC)
Gordon Quinton – The Yellow Sky (NL)
This award recognizes a group or duo. Instrumental music from all folk genres, traditional and contemporary, is eligible.
WINNER Creaking Tree String Quartet – The Soundtrack (ON)
The Foggy Hogtown Boys – Pigtown Fling (ON)
Sultans of String – Luna (ON)
Les Chauffeurs à Pieds – Au Studio des Trois Lits (QC)
Jaime RT & Andy Hillhouse – Spark (BC)
This award recognizes the lyrical and melodic excellence of a recording of original songs written in English. In the case of collaborations, 50% of the songwriters involved must be Canadian.
WINNER Suzie Ungerleider – Oh Susanna – Short Stories – (ON/BC)
Emm Gryner – The Summer of High Hopes (ON)
David Francey – Right of Passage (ON)
Bruce Cockburn – Life Short Call Now (ON)
Jon Brooks – Ours and the Shepherds (ON)
Keri Latimer, Shelley Marshall – Nathan – Key Principles (MB)
This award recognizes the lyrical and melodic excellence of a recording of original songs written in French. In the case of collaborations, 50% of the songwriters involved must be Canadian.
WINNER Hugo Fleury – Polemil Bazar – Avale Ta Montre (QC)
Sylvie Jean – Déjouer le vent (QC)
Guillaume Monette, Guillaume Meloche-Charlebois, Nicola Morel – 3 Gars Su’L'Sofa – Des Cobras, des Tarentules (QC)
Guillaume Arsenault – Le rang des Îles (QC)
Michel Marchildon – Fragments d’Identité (QC/SK)
This award recognizes the lyrical and melodic excellence of a recording of original songs written in an aboriginal language or by an aboriginal artist writing in English, French or an aboriginal language. In the case of collaborations, 50% of the songwriters involved must be Canadian.
WINNER Sandy Scofield – Nikawiy Askiy (BC)
Leela Gilday – Sedze (BC/NT)
Ry Moran – Groundwater (BC)
Laura Vinson – Mossbag Lullaby (AB)
Karen Donaldson Shepherd – The Crow Girls – Where the Green Grass Grows (AB)
Best Vocal Group
This award recognizes a group or duo which focuses on ensemble singing. Music from all folk genres, traditional and contemporary, is eligible. The majority of the tracks must be vocal numbers.
WINNER Tanglefoot – Dance Like Flames (ON)
Nathan – Key Principles (MB)
The Be Good Tanyas – Hello Love (BC)
Blackie and the Rodeo Kings – Let’s Frolic (ON)
Sirens – Look Up (ON)
This award recognizes a group or duo which can be instrumental or instrumental/vocal. Music from all folk genres, traditional and contemporary, is eligible.
WINNER Les Charbonniers de l’Enfer – À la grâce de Dieu (QC)
Creaking Tree String Quartet -The Soundtrack (ON)
The Duhks – Migrations (MB)
John Reichman & The Jaybirds – Stellar Jays (BC)
Harry Manx & Kevin Breit – In Good We Trust (BC/ON)
Best Solo Artist
This award recognizes a solo artist. Instrumental or vocal music from all folk genres, traditional and contemporary, is eligible.
WINNER Sarah Noni Metzner – Daybreak Mourning (BC)
Jeremy Fisher – Goodbye Blue Monday (BC)
Rose Cousins – If You Were For Me (NS)
Ian Tamblyn – Superior : Spirit and Light (QC)
Bruce Cockburn – Life Short Call Now (ON)
Best World Solo
This award recognizes a solo artist. Instrumental or vocal world music is eligible.
WINNER Rita Chiarelli – Cuore : The Italian Sessions (ON)
Duane Andrews – Crocus (NL)
Kiran Ahluwalia – Wanderlust (ON)
Alex Cuba – Agua del Pozo (BC)
Sara Renelik – Aube (QC)
Best World Group
This award recognizes a group or duo. Instrumental or vocal world music is eligible.
WINNER Mighty Popo – Muhazi (ON)
Kobo Town – Independence (ON)
Labess – Tout Va Bien (QC)
Autorickshaw – So the Journey Goes (ON)
Les Gitans de Sarajevo – Opa! (QC)
Best New/Emerging Artist
This award recognizes an up and coming artist, duo or group. Instrumental or vocal music from all folk genres, traditional and contemporary, is eligible.
WINNER Brigitte Saint-Aubin – Être (QC)
The Gruff – The Gruff (BC)
Kim Beggs – Wanderer’s Paean (YT)
Jacob & Lily – The Cathedral (MB)
Notre Dame de Grass – New Canada Road (QC)
Producer of the Year
This award recognizes excellence in craft through acknowledgment of the individual(s) who produce recordings. In case of collaborations, 50% of the team must be Canadian. International releases are permitted.
WINNER Anne Lindsay, Oliver Schroer – Anne Lindsay – News From Up the Street (ON)
Joby Baker, Alexis Puentes – Alex Cuba – Agua del Pozo (BC)
Colin Linden – Blackie and the Rodeo Kings – Let’s Frolic (ON)
Lewis Melville – Tannis Slimmon – Lucky Blue (ON)
Jonathan Goldsmith – Bruce Cockburn – Life Short Call Now (ON)
Pushing the Boundaries
This award recognizes a solo artist or group that takes creative risks by creating music with folk roots that is innovative, original and imaginative.
WINNER Creaking Tree String Quartet – The Sound Track (ON)
Harry Manx & Kevin Breit – In Good We Trust (BC)
Joey Wright – Jalopy (ON)
The Fugitives – In Streetlight Communion (BC)
Autorickshaw – So the Journey Goes (ON)
Young Performer of the Year
This award recognizes a young (19 and under) solo artist or group. Music from all folk genres is eligible.
WINNER Kyrie Kristmanson – The Kyrie K Groove (ON)
The Vissia Sisters – Chrysalis (AB)
Chrissy Crowley – Chrissy Crowley (NS)
Nerea – Footprints (NS)
John Fettes – Poor Art for Poor People (SK)
Sylvia Tyson | The story involves a Chatham, Ontario girl raised on English literature, Childe ballads, and Detroit Rhythm & Blues. The story takes up River Road, and out of Chatham… past the dying embers of the Chinese restaurant, out through the bar rooms and truck stops to the pot-of-gold cities like Toronto and New York. The young girl’s dreams were realized, written down, sung, and recorded. Short story masterpieces, all of them; and the beautiful Chatham girl became one of our most important singer-songwriters.
Briefly: SYLVIA TYSON’s first commercial recordings were part of the 13-album history of IAN & SYLVIA, the landmark folk and country duo who began in the early 60s. The story goes that BOB DYLAN played them “BLOWIN’ IN THE WIND” at the Kettle of Fish in New York, and they were inspired to try their hand at songwriting. Ian’s first song was “FOUR STRONG WINDS”, and Sylvia’s was “YOU WERE ON MY MIND”, which subsequently became a hit for the folk-pop group WE FIVE, and also for CRISPIAN ST. PETER in England.
As BOB DYLAN, EMMYLOU HARRIS, LINDA RONSTADT, GORDON LIGHTFOOT, ANN MURRAY, PETER PAUL AND MARY, and JUDY COLLINS all attested on the “IAN & SYLVIA REUNION” television special (co-produced by Sylvia), that IAN & SYLVIA’S music influenced two decades of writer/performers. “Magic” was the word often used to describe their sound, and the albums – stocked with timeless material – stand their ground today.
One of those albums, “THE GREAT SPECKLED BIRD”, is a cornerstone of country rock music. The album was produced by TODD RUNDGREN and featured AMOS GARRETT on guitar, BUDDY CAGE on steel guitar (later with the NEW RIDERS OF THE PURPLE SAGE, and NEIL YOUNG), and N.D. SMART on drums (MOUNTAIN, GRAM PARSONS).
Along with the early work of GRAM PARSONS and STEVE YOUNG, this album helped to lay the foundation for what would become country rock, progressive country, and finally new country. Sealed copies have sold for as much as $200.
IAN & SYLVIA parted ways in the mid-70s, and Sylvia established an impressive solo career, hosting the award-winning CBC Network radio show, TOUCH THE EARTH, and a national CBC Television show, COUNTRY IN MY SOUL. She has released seven solo albums, the most recent being “GYPSY CADILLAC”, released by SONY in Canada, and by ROUND TOWER MUSIC in Europe. She continues to have great success with her songwriting.
In 1992, SYLVIA TYSON was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame on the nationally televised Juno Awards.
Although she is still active as a solo artist, SYLVIA is currently part of a collaboration with three other female singer/song-writers in a group called QUARTETTE. They released their first album on the Denon label in Canada in 1994, won a Canadian Country Music Award on the 1994 television awards show, and most recently received the nomination as best country group on the 1995 JUNO Awards. The group’s second album, “WORK OF THE HEART” was released in November of 1995, and “IT’S CHRISTMAS!”, a collection of new and traditional Christmas songs as released in November of 1996.
Also released in November of ’95 was “AND THEN I WROTE (the songwriter speaks)”, a book on songwriters she co-edited with longtime friend and collaborator, Tom Russell. ”
In March of 1995, Sylvia received the Governor General’s Order of Canada. Jennie Punter / The Star
The Duhks | The most vital acoustic music being made today acknowledges its predecessors and lives in the here and now. For four years now, The Duhks, the band of five skilled, high-energy, tattooed twenty-somethings from Winnipeg, Manitoba, has been riveting audiences and winning staunch fans across North America and around the world with just that kind of music.
Since the release of their self-titled, Bela Fleck-produced album in 2005, and the consequent re-release of their Canadian debut, Your Daughters and Your Sons, as well as this year’s Sugar Hill release Migrations, the band has won admirers as diverse as David Crosby, Dolly Parton, and Doc Watson. This is not surprising, given their Duhks-alone blend of soul, gospel, North American folk, Brazilian samba, old time country string band, zydeco, and Irish dance music, and the attack they bring to these interwoven acoustic styles—which might as well be called sheer rock and roll. Their unique sound has also earned them a Grammy Award nomination in the Best Country Vocal Performance by a Group or Duo category, one Juno Award, two additional Juno nominations, two Folk Alliance awards, and an Americana Music Association nomination for Best Emerging Artists.
On the eve of their second major North American release- Migrations – the international acceptance and excitement generated by this band is still fresh enough to be something of a heady surprise for its young members. As Duhks founder Leonard Podolak puts it, “It still blows my mind that yeah, we made a record, and now 40,000 people have it., and many have seen that first video (“The Mists of Down Below” which went to #1 at Bravo Canada), and so a lot of times now we’ll go to a gig in a town where we’ve never been before, never played a festival, but they know what we do—and they’re pumped!” Fans have even recognized them walking in Times Square, and cheered them taking the stage at the huge Woodford Folk Festival near Brisbane, Australia.
And so the title of their new, sophomore Sugar Hill release, Migrations, seems to speak for itself. The Canadian prairie band has toured relentlessly, played everything from rock halls to theatres to festivals, making the world their home. The title also marks just how far The Duhks (pronounced like the answer to the question, “Which ones up there are Daffy and Donald?”) have traveled since their formation in 2001 and how much they’ve experienced in that short time frame.
With Jessee Havey leaving the band in early 2007 to pursue other musical endeavors, the remaining members (Tania Elizabeth -Fiddle, Jordan McConnell – Guitar, Leonard Podolak – Banjo, Scott Senior – Percussion) were joined on the road by vocalist Sarah Dugas, a member of the Canadian folk band, Madrigaia. With her addition, The Duhks add even more diversity of sound to songs, old and new, during their energetic live performances.
Migrations was produced in Nashville by bluegrass and folk veteran Tim O’Brien and co-produced, as was their last disc, by Grammy award winning engineer and producer Gary Paczosa, the disc’s eleven tracks flowed into place with new-found ease, strong evidence of this band’s growing sense of what a “Duhks’ song” sounds like. The band members are quick to agree that this album is both the strongest representation of their regularly electrifying live act yet—and a record that’s also more direct and tooled to hone in on the songs’ meanings and emotional core. All of this was picked up with ease on the road by Sarah who adds her own elements and influences to the songs.
During the course of recording, whether it was Tania exploring Scott’s Latin collection and fascination with Brazilian and Cuban music while practicing classical violin licks, Jessee soaking up the live soul wallop of the legendary Betty LaVette the night before a recording session, or Jordan stretching to extend the reach of his bass-line defining guitar runs, the Duhks’ keep exploring new territory, searching—and sharing the results.
Bringing a new vocalist on the road has only added more diversity to the Duhks truly unique sound. “Everyone in this band has learned from each other– in every combination,” Leonard submits.
Time can only tell which direction the Duhks will fly to next, but one thing’s for certain—they will bring with them a sound unlike any other.
Ron Hynes | With a songwriting career that spans more than 30 years, Ron Hynes is a six-time East Coast Music Award winner, a Genie Award winner and a past Juno, CCMA and Canadian Folk Music Awards nominee. He’s been recipient of both Artist of The Year and the prestigious Arts Achievement Award from the Newfoundland & Labrador Arts Council, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award from the St. John’s Folk Arts Council. Ron Hynes also holds an Honorary PhD from Memorial University for his songwriting and cont ribution to the cultural life of his beloved home province of Newfoundland (Canada).
Frequently referred to as the “man of a thousand songs”, Ron Hynes’ songs have been covered by dozens of artists worldwide, including Emmylou Harris, Christy Moore, Mary Black, Denny Doherty, Murray McLauchlan, Valdy, John McDermott, Terry Kelly, Prairie Oyster, The Good Brothers, Shaye, The Cottars and most recently, classical soprano Hayley Westenra.
Ron Hynes began his career as a singer-songwriter on the coffeehouse circuit in the early seventies and while on a Canadian theatre tour with The Mummers Troupe in ’76, he composed a song called “Sonny’s Dream” that’s become a folk classic performed and recorded by artists all over the world. He was a founding member of the Wonderful Grand Band, a musical comedy show featuring a six-piece traditional/folk/rock band together with various members of Codco. The group produced two albums of original work, forty-one half-hour television shows (plus specials) for CBC-TV, and tour ed the country non-stop during its six-year history.
Ron Hynes recorded two original albums for EMI: “Cryer’s Paradise” (’93) and “Face To The Gale” (’97). The independently produced “11:11 Nfld. Women Sing” is a collection of songs co-written by Ron and Connie Hynes, sung by Newfoundland’s best female singers. Ron’s 1998 independent release “Standing In Line In The Rain” was awarded Best New Album from MusicNL.
Ron’s moonlight career as an actor resulted in two principal theatre roles, as Newfoundland songwriter Johnny Burke in “The Bard Of Prescott Street”, and as country legend Hank Williams in “Hank Williams: The Show He Never Gave”. Ron also had a lead role in the Newfoundland Independent film release, “A Secret Nation”, for which his original song, “The Final Breath” won a Genie Award for best song. Ron spent most of his time in 1998 and 1999 involved in film and television projects, playing the irrepressible Johnny Shea in the CBC/Rinkrat TV series, “Dooley Gardens”, and closed out the decade as the subject of a concert/documentary film entitled “Ron Hynes: The Irish Tour” which continues to air on television networks throughout North America and abroad.
In 2003 Ron Hynes released “Get Back Change” (Borealis), garnering MusicNL Awards for Male Artist, Country Album and SOCAN Song of the Year (Get Back Change), and winning the 2004 East Coast Music Awards for Country Recording of the Year and Album of the Year. Produced by Paul Mills at The Millstream Studios in Toronto, “Get Back Change” features 14 Ron Hynes’ songs, with guest performances by Sylvia Tyson, Cindy Church and Jenny Whiteley.
December 2005 saw the launch of Ron’s first songbook, “Songs of Ron Hynes – Volume One”. Published by Vinland Music and distributed by Landwash Distribution, the book features 26 original Ron Hynes songs, arranged for vocal and guitar. Other recent projects include composing and performing the theme song for CBC-TV comedy series “Hatching Matching and Dispatching” , the musical soundtrack for the animated film “The Sparky Book”, and composing all songs for the Mary Walsh/Rick Boland stage play “High Steel”. He also contributed two original works to the feature film “Young Triffie’s Been Made Away With”.
2006 marked the release of the “Ron Hynes” CD, a stirring coll ection of 14 soul-baring, personal songs, being touted by many as his most brilliant work to date. Ron teamed up again with producer Paul Mills and Borealis Records for this latest disc, which was the #1 most played album on Galaxie Network’s Folk-Roots channel for 2006. The “Ron Hynes” CD generated multiple regional and national award nominations, resulting in Ron Hynes winning the 2006 MusicNL Awards for Songwriter of the Year, Folk-Roots Artist of the Year, Entertainer of The Year and the 2007 ECMA for Male Solo Recording of the Year.
Ron Hynes tours regularly throughout Canada and abroad, attracting enthusiastic audiences wherever he performs.
T. Nile | “Come from Galiano Island with a banjo on her knee, Vancouver’s T. Nile could well be the biggest roots noise out of these very rootsy parts since Neko Case and the Be Good Tanyas.” John P.McLaughlin
Since releasing At My Table in July of ’06, T. Nile has toured her unique blend of contemporary roots and feel-good folk-reggae-rock through Canada, Alaska, Germany and Denmark, to packed houses and sold out shows. She Played for 20.000 people at the Edmonton Folk Music Festival in August! Quite a ways from her humble beginnings in a tiny cabin on Galiano Island, Tamara was practically groomed for a life in the spotlight and on the road; She started out accompanying her father, a multi-instrumentalist sidewalk entertainer, through North America and Australia at the age of 6.
At 19, Nile moved to Vancouver to see if she could launch a music career. She took to hanging out at the Railway Club, getting to know people, swapping songs and ideas. Eventually she began hosting a monthly showcase at the Railway called “Connect”. She played with lots of the young rootsy artists coming up on the Vancouver scene- Dyad, Kinnie Starr and Ridley Bent, to name a few.
Meanwhile, she was working on her songwriting, putting together everything she had learned at home, and away from home. In spring of 2006 she recorded and launched At My Table. You can hear the ‘alt country’ of Gillian Welch and the ‘high lonesome’ sound of Dock Boggs. Bob Marley is there as well, and one song ends with thanks to Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee. While many of the musical influences come from south of here, the lyrics are very much about Tamara’s life on Galliano and in Vancouver. Reviewers and listeners have hailed the CD and its songs. Festival Distribution has picked it up and CBC and campus radio has fallen in love with it. Most notably, T. Nile was awarded the title of “Best New/Emerging Artist” at the Canadian Folk Music Awards, as well as being named “Critic’s Favorite New Discovery” in Penguin Eggs.
A veteran touring artist by the time she was twelve, T. Nile is back on the road, Joined by Joanna Chapman-Smith on mandolin, guitar and vocals, Malcom Shoolbraid on drums and Scott Paulley / Cody Westman on bass. Having played the Atlin, Islands and Artswells Festivals, as well as Edmonton and Salmon Arm Roots and Blues this summer, Tamara’s star continues to shine bright as she goes back into the studio to record her upcoming sophomore release, Cabin Songs.
“Eclectic songs, rooted in tradition but looking forward. One of Canada’s musical gifts to the 21st century.” Gary Cristall
Florent Vollant | On the North Shore, just east of Sept-Îles and not too far from the Moisie River, is situated a native reserve called Maliotenam. This is where Florent Vollant settled and grew up after leaving his birthplace in Labrador. It is also where the young Montagnais shared his attachment to traditional values and willingness to embrace modernity…
In 1984, Florent began his career as a writer-composer-performer and the very next year, he committed himself to the creation of the Festival Innu Nikamu. Since then, the festival has brought together numerous artists from many nations. Florent also had the honour of being named Artist for Peace in 1994 for his music which always advocates a deep love of life, nature, and eternal hope. It is without surprise that he went on to be spokesperson for the First Nations Garden (Montréal Botanical Garden) and to perform at the closing gala of the 13th FrancoFolies Festival in Montréal, called La Grande Paix (Great Peace).
From 1989 to 1995, Florent recorded Kashtin, Innu and Akua Tuta while part of the group Kashtin. These three albums would earn him 4 Félix Awards and the chance to give shows not only in Québec and across Canada, but also in France, Belgium, South Korea, USA, Bolivia…He certainly has worldwide appeal!
Over the years, Florent has also collaborated in many other musical projects, such as the album Instinct by Richard Séguin, Arthur Lamothe’s Le Silence des fusils soundtrack, and Robbie Robertson’s The Native Americans album. He also lent a helping hand to Marc Déry in producing his first solo album as well as co-writing the Ninanu title. As for Zachary Richard, he was offered Pagayez, a beautiful piece and one of the biggest hits from his album Cœur fidèle. Florent is also the man behind the soundtrack of the animated series Le monde perdu, broadcast on VRAK TV.
Florent is still very present in Maliotenam, and he has taken the time to launch a project that is very close to his heart: a recording studio doubling as a training and production centre for young native musicians. He also took the opportunity to produce a serene and peaceful Christmas album, Nipaiamianan, sung in Innu, for which he took home his first Juno Award.
His creative and nomadic sensibilities have lead him to produce Katak, a new album bringing together the talents of many friends and collaborators, such as Zachary Richard, Marc Déry, Rick Haworth, Luce Dufault, Richard Séguin, Willie Mitchell, Claude McKenzie, Ray Bonneville, Sylvain Michel, Lucien Gabriel Jourdain, Éric Lapointe, Claude Péloquin, Mario Légaré, Denis Courchesne, Richard Perrotte and Jeff Smallwood. Slowly and carefully crafted, this opus of warm sounds has been receiving many praises and reminds us that we have in our midst a richly talented writer-composer-performer.
“[...] This album is exquisite, warm, and in touch with the Earth. One of this year’s best…” Le Devoir ; “[...] A folk-rock album mixed with warm techno rhythms coming from the very heart of the continent. [...] One of the best Americana productions.” La Presse; “Well-rounded, mysterious, simplicity but always rich, the Montagnais’s music eases life. Opulent.” Voir; “Showered with praise, and rightly so [...] Music as warm and welcoming as it is mysterious” Journal de Montréal; “Vollant has taken the opportunity to show his roots and honour his nomadic brothers in this superb album” Ici
Ian Tamblyn has been a musician, songwriter, playwright and producer for many years. He has recorded several albums and countless soundtracks for theater and film. In recent years, Ian has had a close association with adventure travel and scientific expeditions. These travels have taken him from the icebergs of Greenland to the underwater world of Antarctica.
Some of these adventures have found their way into song and instrumental recordings. As a playwright, Ian has written nine plays and his most recent is called Dreamwalker, a true story about a very dramatic sleepwalker. His play “Legends of the Northern Swamp” is still on tour in Quebec and is produced by Geordie Productions of Montreal. He is currently working on several soundtracks.
As a producer, Ian has worked with many diverse talents. His projects include Terry Tufts, Chris MacLean, Kim Erickson and Kathryn Briggs. In the past he has worked with Beth Ferguson, Alex Houghton and grungers FurnaceFace.
Vishten plays a mixture of Acadian, Irish and Scottish musical styles featuring fiery fiddling and powerful stepdancing. Formed in 2000 on their native Prince Edward Island, Vishten is a sextet of young traditional Acadian musicians-dancers founded by twin sisters Pastelle LeBlanc (accordion, piano, dance) and Emmanuelle LeBlanc (bodhran, tin whistle, piano, dance) and Pascal Miousse ( fiddle, mandolin, guitar). Their stage show recalls the joy and energy of kitchen parties,” informal community gatherings where all are welcome to sing, play and dance. The rhythms and melodies are inseparable, and reflect the joie de vivre of the Acadian culture of Eastern Canada, with flying fingers, tapping feet and an unabashed sense of celebration.
Galitcha | Since 1996 Kuljit Sodhi, Galitcha’s lead singer, composer and percussionist has been building an ensemble which integrates music with a strong North Indian footprint overlaid with influences from western folk and jazz and instrumentation from around the world. From heartfelt devotional and love songs, to compelling lively dance tunes, Galitcha (meaning tapestry) takes audiences on a musical journey from one end of the emotional spectrum to the other. The songs are mainly sung in Punjabi, Urdu and Hindi with explanations in English and/or French. Vocalists Kuljit Sodhi also on East Indian dholki drum and Chris MacLean also on guitar, the accordion-like harmonium, Appalachian dulcimer and a one-stringed banjo called gopichand; Linsey Wellman on saxophones and flutes; and Shawn Mativetsky on East Indian tabla drum, dhol (barrel drum) and percussion; create a culturally diverse Canadian sound. But Galitcha’s performances are not just about the music. There is an inspiring sense of devotion – to the muse, to each other, to the audience – which is consistently part of their presence on and off stage.
Based in Ottawa, Canada, they have performed in concert halls, schools and folk festivals across Canada and at The National Arts Centre, The Canadian Museum of Civilization, National Library Auditorium (Ottawa); The Lincoln Center (NY); Place des Arts (Montréal); Festival de Rabat and International Festival de Tetouan – Morrocco 2002; Festival au Désert – Timbouctou Mali – January 2005. They have collaborated on stage with artists such as acoustic blues guitarist Harry Manx; violinist Oliver Schoer; slide guitarist Ellen McIllwaine and accordionist Yves Lambert (founder of La Bottine Souriante).
Galitcha has also been chosen to perform official mainstage showcases at the following industry conferences: The Ontario Council of Folk Festivals conference and Ontario Arts Council’s Ontario Contact (2002); NERFA (North East Regional Folk Alliance) conference in Monticello NY (2003); Folk Alliance Canada and Folquébec (2003); Pacific Contact conference in Vancouver (2004); ArtsCan conference for educators Vancouver BC (March 2005); Contact Ontarois conference – closing Gala (January 2005) collaborative performance with Yves Lambert (accordion), Jean Marc Lalonde (accordion) and Magali Sanscartier (violin) and an official showcase in January 2007; Réseau Scènes Montreal, QC (Sept 2005); Arts Presenters (APAP) NYC (Jan 2006 and 2007); North American Folk Alliance Conference (Feb 2006) Austin Texas; Rideau Conference Québec City (Feb 2006); Performing Arts Exchange (PAE) Baltimore MD (Sept 2006)
The group has received financial support from the Government of Canada through the Canada Music Fund for promotion and for attendances at NERFA, Contact Ontario, Pacific Contact, the Vancouver Island MusicFest and the Festival au Désert in Mali. Assistance was also provided by the Canadian Embassy in Mali for travel to the Festival au Désert in January 2005 and from the Department of Foreign Affairs Canada for travel to the US in August 2004.
Galitcha’s premiere full-length recording entitled SATRANG, (2002), has done well on radio across Canada. Their concerts have been recorded live for CBC radio’s Bandwidth and Global Village and for Radio Canada. The CD has reached ‘top 10′ status on world music charts on stations from Toronto to Victoria. Galitcha was awarded CIUT’s (Toronto) ‘Porcupine Award’ for Musique du Monde CD of the year (2003). Philly Markowitz, host of CBC’s Roots and Wings, chose SATRANG as a ‘Pick of the Year’ (2003).
The group released their second full-length disc in November 2006. The recording, entitled Célébration Blé d’inde Celebration, reflects Galitcha’s progress as a group and tells the story of their travels both geographically, historically and musically. It features 2 collaborative pieces with legendary Quebecois accordionist, Yves Lambert. The CD is distributed by Festival Distribution.
Continuous creativity and performance excellence are the primary goals of Galitcha. With a solid base in Ottawa Canada, Galitcha is steadily working at reaching out to an ever widening audience – across Canada, in the US and internationally.
Here’s what they are saying about Galitcha:
3.5 stars Célébration Blé d’Inde Celebration – “… (Galitcha) may specialize in East Indian folk music, but they broaden their songs about spirituality, strife and love with everything from Appalachian dulcimer to slide guitar and saxophone. Especially fun on their sophomore disc are Blé d’Inde and J’entends le Moulin, crazy-quilt blends of Indian and French Canadian music that point to music’s borderless nature…” Patrick Langston, Ottawa Citizen, August 2006
” Tout comme en 2003, Galitcha a encore une fois enflammé le public de Mémoire et Racines. Quel band enlevant !!! ” Gilles Pitre, directeur du Festival Mémoire & Racines 2006
“It was an evening of love. Galitcha is that rare blending of superb musicianship and emotional connection. There is something truly addictive about Galitcha’s music.”
Coleman Barkin Producer, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, NYC
“Their name means ‘tapestry’ and that’s exactly what they are. Uncompromisingly Galitcha scales peaks around the globe culminating in tabla driven songs that are danceable, touchable and irresistible. ….Their CD called Satrang is the kind of album you just want to keep on listening to – never a dull moment on it which is no mean feat!” Steve Fruitman, CIUT Toronto
“4 stars – SATRANG – a first-rate collection of East Indian folk songs and sparkling instrumentals meticulously fused with tasteful elements of jazz, flamenco, Celtic rhythms, Chinese classical, and a host of western and world flourishes.” Steve Baylin, Ottawa Xpress
“I saw them at the most recent Northeast Folk Alliance Conference, ….. in terms of musicianship, they were really a notch above many of the other performers.”
John Weathers, Riverbend’s Acoustic World Music Series, Philadelphia PA
“Gatlicha’s performance was an education for the audience, but it was far from a dusty classroom experience. Galitcha gave a performance that shook the senses and left the audience in such a happy state! Often cliched buzz-words like “electric”, “virtuoso”, “versatile” and “captivating” really do fit this group!” Ron Olesko, Producer/Host WFDU-FM NJ
“The Punjabi folk songs were immediate hits with festival (Lunenburg Folk Harbour Festival) crowds this weekend. The words are Urdu but the emotions tug at the universal heart.” Stephen Pedersen, Halifax Herald